England manager Roy Hodgson has told Theo Walcott that he needs to earn back his starting role for Arsenal if he wants to seal a place in his squad for the European Championships.
The 27 year-old has started only one league game since the last week in January, and with Danny Welbeck impressing since his return from injury, game time could be tough to come by.
His international boss Hodgson has now claimed it will be hard to break into his final squad for the upcoming tournament, if players are lacking in game time, and Theo Walcott was named as one of those players who is likely to struggle.
“I think a lot of players have got work to do, let’s be fair, and it’s going to be harder for players who don’t get a chance to show what they can do because they don’t make their club team. One can’t deny that it will be even harder for them.
“For Theo, he, like quite a lot of other players, will have to try hard to get back in the Arsenal team, otherwise I will not be seeing enough of him. But we know Theo Walcott, we know what he can do and it will be a balance.
“You always want me to say, and I understand it from your point of view but you should understand it from my point of view — I don’t want to be pushed with my back against the wall, as you are trying to do [into], ‘Well, if he doesn’t play matches, you won’t take him then.’
“Basically speaking, the simple fact of the matter is that I’m not prepared to say one way or another. You will have to wait and see.”
Walcott was a regular substitute for the last European Championship, but on his current form, is not likely to even make the squad.
Welbeck is outshining him, Daniel Sturridge, Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy vying for attacking roles, his place looks all the more unlikely.
One saving grace for the forward is that Raheem Sterling is currently sidelined for at least six more weeks, and may not have much time to seal his spot either.
Do you think there is still time for Theo to earn a spot? Does he even deserve to be on the plane?